Prime Minister Imran Khan on Wednesday proposed a five agenda item to lift the agricultural sector in developing countries which is facing setback due to the coronavirus.
The prime minister mentioned the five-point agenda during his speech at the forty-fourth session of the Governing Council of the International Fund for Agricultural Development.
The conference, which takes place on February 17 and 18, 2021, will focus on the overarching theme “Rural development: a precondition for global resilience,” said IFAD.
Prime Minister Imran Khan, addressing the conference, said that more than 20 countries are food insecure, adding that the World Food Program has warned of hunger in the poorest countries and conflict zones.
He said that the world faces many challenges in recovering from the pandemic and achieving the vital sustainable development goals of no poverty and no hunger.
There is a lack of financing, a lack of investment, a distortion of trade, unsustainable consumption patterns, degradation of agricultural land and forests, an impending water crisis, loss of biodiversity, and polluted rivers and oceans, he said.
“We need a revolution and a vision for the future. The COVID-19 pandemic and the climate crisis must convey a message to all – rich and poor and weak or powerful – that we will perish or survive together,” the prime minister said.
PM Imran Khan noted that the concepts of geostrategic adversary, regional or global domination, political gain from foreign intervention and occupation, and oppression of people are outdated and will soon be seen as irrelevant.
“We need a joint global plan for the survival and prosperity of all humanity, said the prime minister, adding that he had proposed a debt deferral program last year.
The prime minister went on to say that global lenders have helped developing countries, however, citing reports, he said developing countries need billions of dollars to recover from the pandemic and achieve the United Nations Sustainable Development Goals (SGDs).
Going forward, the prime minister proposed a five-point agenda to lift the developing world and help it recover from the pandemic.
1. We need to install a sustainable agricultural infrastructure to facilitate the transportation, production and distribution of agricultural products – the green route prepared by China is a good example.
2. Governments, more actively, need to ensure adequate and fair prices for agricultural products and food. The so-called market miracle must be balanced with state assistance. Farmers should not rely on the mercy of cooperatives, and at the same time, international agricultural trade must be rationalized.
3. Breakthrough technologies must be consciously applied to increase food production, ensure efficient use of water and soil, and most importantly, improve seed quality.
4. The adoption of digital technology in agriculture is as important as it is in other sectors of the economy. Ensuring internet and broadband access to rural areas will be critical to their international and global supply chains.
5. Most importantly, we have to rethink [of] our consumption patterns and food production. We can eat better, and many of us would do well to eat less.